George Soros and Carlos Slim Betting Big On Telecom

George Soros and Carlos Slim Betting Big On Telecom

George Soros, the billionaire investor and philanthropist ranked 19th on the list of the world’s richest people, continues to bet big on Brazil. Quattro Telecomunicacoes, a Brazilian holding company acquired by Soros earlier this year, is set to buy more 4G wireless spectrum in the next government auction, through its Sunrise Telecomunicacoes division, a pay-TV provider that is expanding into mobile services. Sunrise earlier acquired two spectrum licenses offering fourth-generation wireless access, spending 19.1 million reais ($9.3 million).

Fares Nassar, the president of Quattro Telecomunicacoes revealed that he persuaded Soros to invest in Brazilian telecommunications during a promotional tour last November.

Commenting about  future investments in Brazil, Fares Nassar said “We’re on the lookout for opportunities, there are several states that have similar characteristics to Sao Paulo state that interest us.”

As per the reports from Carla Simoes and Crayton Harrison of Bloomberg, Sunrise will not directly compete with biggies of the likes of Carlos Slim’s America Movil SAB and Telefonica S.A. (MCE:TEF) (NYSE:TEF) a Spanish broadband and telecommunications service provider. Instead, it will offer a complementary service that lets Wi-Fi devices connect to mobile-phone networks.

Carlos Slim who made much of his fortune from Latin American wireless investments, and is ranked the richest person in the worlds. Carlos Slim more than doubled his stake in Royal KPN NV (KPN) despite being faced with stiff resistance from the company itself, which tried to convince the shareholders that a Slim’s offer was not in the best interest of the company.

America Movil SAB de CV (NYSE:AMX)(NASDAQ:AMOV), Slim’s wireless carrier, which controls 70 percent of Mexico’s mobile-phone business, disclosed a 21 percent stake in KPN, up from 8.7 percent. Earlier what resulted in a failed talks, KPN and Telefonica SA (TEF) sixth largest mobile network provider in the world, were evaluating options, including a possible merger of KPN’s E-Plus unit with Telefonica’s O2, a European broadband and telecommunications company that trades as O2.

Because of the opposition from within the company, the Dutch government  intervened, with the minister of economic affairs stating that he is in touch with KPN on its latest developments. The interests of KPN clients, shareholders and employees must be prioritized, the Dutch Fovernment said on its website.

“KPN is going to have to accept that the Mexicans have arrived,” said an analyst in Mexico City “They can’t spurn a shareholder that has 21 percent and soon will surely exceed 27 percent.”


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